Monday, May 6, 2013

Baseball Mom




 The boys participated in a walk for Living Water International that raised enough money for 2 1/2 wells in Haiti!  Great job organizing Shank Family!
 Post-game soccer glow for Collin.
 Saturday morning on the baseball field with Connor.

Anniversary (for us)/Birthday (for Jim) dinner celebration with the Brinkruffs.

This is my freshman season as a baseball mom.  My husband thrust me into my new role the minute he signed Connor up for his first baseball team.  Naively, I thought baseball would be just like t-ball (minus the t).  Silly me.  Baseball is (literally) in a different league.

Right away, I missed t-ball.  Gone were the days when everyone runs to a base, scoring is superfluous, and game time is capped at an hour. (Yes, an hour!)  

Baseball is for big boys.  Strikes and outs are called.  Scoring is kept.  Games run on for....ever, it seems.  Practices and games are frequent and can be called on any (or many) days of the week.

At first, I was annoyed.  I missed the predictability of a single/fixed/weekly practice with a single/fixed/weekly game.  Family life could easily rotate around the repetition.  The baseball schedule was different.  It required us to work around it, rather than it work around us.

The first baseball game was long.  I spent most of my time corralling Connor's siblings on the sideline and rebuffing their endless pleas to visit the snack bar.  With all the commotion, I barely caught a glimpse of Connor swinging the bat or standing ready in the outfield.  To say the least, I was irked.

But then things started to get better.

Since the first game, I've learned a thing or two, like:

1) The snack bar can be used for bribes.
2) The adjoining playground offers siblings something to do and a birds-eye view of the field.
3)  Connor is really enjoying himself.

It's the third one that's softened my outlook on baseball.

Tonight, I plopped down on a bench near the playground.  Connor's siblings jumped on the seesaw and secured a spot on the tire swing.  I watched Connor stride up to bat and fall into a stance.  He whacked a ball into the outfield; it whizzed past his opponents.  He raced to first base and then pushed his oversized batter's helmet away from his face.  Even from a distance, I could see his eyes aglow.

And so it continued for the remainder of the game.  Balls caught in the outfield.  Runs to home plate.  Endless cheers from teammates.

We left the field over two hours later.  We were fatigued, dusty, and hungry, but happy. 


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